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stroke of my judgment, might take warning, and turn from the evil of their doings, before it be too late.
20. But how, saith the Lord, have they hardened their hearts? Truly, by saying to their fellows when the calamity was passed, "Why this is truly remarkable, the Lord must have done this; but perhaps the like never will take place again, and so we will go on as usual, [and do as we have done. ]”
21. Others would say, "These things are unavoidable in the nat-` ural course and order of the elements; I do not consider that God has any thing to do with it."
22. And by this means, they would strengthen their fellow mortals in the belief, that my Almighty hand and power, hath nothing to do in bringing such sweeping calamities upon the earth, and by so doing, [they would ] strengthen and encourage their companions to go on, still adding to, and increasing the black catalogue of crimes that was attached to those whom I had swept from the face of the earth.
23. Yea, saith the Lord, instead of my judgments serving to work repentance and humiliation, in those who were unvisited by my judgments, it only served, (with many,) to harden them in their awful crimes of wickedness.
24. I deal, saith the Lord Almighty, with the creatures of my creation, according to my own wisdom. I deal with the different nations, kindreds, tongues and people, dwelling upon the face of the whole earth, both in mercy and in judgment; and in my own wisdom I deal with them as nations, and I deal with them as individuals.
25. Give ear, O Earth, and understand my words, all ye people who dwell in her, saith the Lord of hosts. Will you receive the word of the Lord your God in mercy, now while it is extended to you, in this, the latter day of his glory? Or will you forbear to hear, and refrain from repentance, as your fathers before you have done?
26. Eternity, and the souls dwelling therein, cry unto Me, as a witness, that from the earliest ages of the world to the present day, mankind, as a body, have stood against the most merciful offers of my hand, by refusing to hearken to my word, which I sent forth for their best good, their peace and their comfort.
27. But, as a few glimmering stars in the midst of midnight darkness, so have I preserved a few chosen witnesses, who were prepared, through deep tribulation, and much suffering, to testify of
my word, and of my work in truth, through all the dispensations of my goodness to man, from the earliest ages of the world to the present day.
28. I have never promised salvation nor protection, to any souls, only in the path of true obedience to that revealed will and order, made known to them, through such instruments, as I had prepared and raised up to testify of Me, both by precept and example, in the age and day wherein they lived.
29. And, as a criterion by which to tell those who were the true witnesses of my word, I did proclaim, through my blessed Son, that fruits alone, should declare, for or against each soul; that I would know no man by his words; but by the fruits which he brought forth, should he be judged. And this declaration from my eternal throne, must, and forever will remain unalterable, through time and in eternity.
30. For I AM, is a just God, dispensing unto every one according as their works shall merit; and weigh every nation, according to my wisdom, in the just balance of my power; and according to that measure which they have meted unto others, so shall it be meted to them again.
31. And according to that cup which they have filled with the waters of affliction for others to drink; so shall it again be filled to overflowing, and returned to their own mouths; and according to the effusion of blood which they have caused in other nations to flow; so shall it flow from their own veins, with an increased measure, saith the Lord their God.
OF MAN'S PROBATIONARY STATE. HIS DISOBEDIENCE AND LOSS. THE REVELATION OF A SAVIOR &c.
THE HIGH AND EXALTED IDEAS OF MAN, INFLATED BY HIS OWN
1. Man strayed from God, by disobedi- 27. Of the crucifixion of Christ; by what
20. The state in which the wicked enter 45. Naught but humility will stay the hand
1. Mankind, by disobedience to Me, their God and Creator, have strayed far, very far from that way in which I intended their feet should walk; and from that work in which I wished to have them engaged, while on their short pilgrimage through time.
2. But, that man might not be as a mere machine, deprived of the power of volition, or free agency, I placed him, when created, in a peculiar situation or state of trial, and knowing the great weakness to which he would be exposed, I gave him a solemn charge, concerning the dangers that lay in his way; and that the most fatal
consequences would ensue, should he persist in acts cf disobedience to that course which I had then instructed him to pursue. Having done this, I left him to prove his fidelity and true obedience to my word.
3. But the irrational or animal propensities, [called the serpent,] soon over-ruled his right reason, and placed upon him strong bands, which held him in bondage to the law of sin and death, which is the animal or inferior part; and having polluted his seed, by acts of disobedience, the curse which followed, and rested upon him, by increasing the inordinate and beastly passions of lust, which never could be satisfied, had now become so strongly attached to the sensitive powers of the mind, which now were bent on gratification, [that they] could never be removed, short of a full cross being borne, against every propensity pertaining to that nature.
4. And by the influence of this degraded and beastly propensity, (which never was, and never will be necessary for the sake of procreation,) mankind, as a body, from the earliest ages, to the present day, have been exalted in their own imaginations, inflated with pride and vanity to that degree and extent, that I suffered their hearts to become hardened, their ears to become deaf, and their eyes to become blind; for they had chosen their own way, therefore I did suffer their delusion, saith the God of Heaven.
5. Not that it was my choice, but a choice that they themselves had made, in open and willful rebellion against all the fatherly and kind entreaties which I had sent forth to them, through messengers of my own preparing.
6. Do not the records of eternal justice and truth, declare this against you, O inhabitants of earth? Do not the countless millions now groaning in chains and fetters of darkness, bound in eternity, witness this truth?
7. The eternal record before my throne, which shall bring a just reward to every human creature, declareth and sealeth this solemn truth; your own way you have pursued, and not the way of your God.
8. Your own plans of salvation you have embraced, and not the plans of your God. Your own paths you have pursued, and in them your feet have been swift to shed blood; these are not the paths of your Creator God.
9. All forms, all creeds and systems of religion that have been established by the sword, or supported by the force of arms, are of
man's own invention, that the life of that beastly nature, (after which the whole world, from its creation to the present day, have wandered,) might be spared and kept alive. It never emanated from my holy spirit, saith the God of Heaven; but frail and mortal man, in his bigoted and darkened condition, hath invented it, and practiced the same.
10. Hearken, all ye nations, and give ear, O ye people of the earth, saith the Lord your God. Can you answer these questions? Have your souls found that which saves you from committing sin in the present tense? Have you found that which saves you from shedding the blood of your fellow creatures? Have you found that which causes you to love your neighbors as yourselves?
11. Have you found that which saves you from all the gratifications of lust, and beastly works of nature, only that which is indispensable for the sake of procreation, or for the fulfilling of that great command which I gave to the children of men, in early days; under which the most licentious and beastly works of abomination have been cloaked, from that day to this?
12. The command was good, and stands good, in its order and place, but not one act of gratification carried further than is necessary for the propagation of your own species, can ever be covered by this command.
13. Have you found that which enables you to dwell together in unity, harmony and peace, having all things in common, and none saying that aught of the things that he possessed were his own? If not, what is the matter? Ponder these things in your own hearts! Communities, you say, are good, if they can agree.
14. But thus saith the Lord, have you laid the axe to the root of the tree, or have you only lopped a few of the branches? Have you found the golden cord of purity, that binds souls in one? Or do the bands of sin and death surround you, and [cause you to be] broken in pieces?
15. What was the reason that the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah refused to hearken to the solemn warnings which I sent forth unto them, through messengers of my own preparing? Did they not mock and scorn my witnesses, and deride the word of my awful truth at their mouths, that unless they did humble themselves and repent, they with their city, should be destroyed?
16. What was this, but the arrogance of their spirit that refused to